Plenary task: “Reveal the face of Christ” – The Catholic Leader

Archbishop Jerome Lloyd OSJVPosted by

Archbishop Peter Comensoli in today’s Mass for the Fifth Plenary Council of Australia has said the Council’s task is to reveal the face of Christ – a face that blends cultures, languages, ethnicities and histories.

Plenary task: “Reveal the face of Christ” – The Catholic Leader
Plenary task: “Reveal the face of Christ”

The Melbourne Archbishop celebrated Mass on the final full day of the Council’s first general assembly, which will conclude with Mass at Brisbane’s St Stephen’s Cathedral on Sunday morning.

Mass in Melbourne was followed by the final reports from Members of the Plenary Council summarising topics they had discussed in small groups throughout the week. Watch the livestreamed final session here. A summary of the final reports can be found here.

Hopeful message: Melbourne Archbishop Peter Comensoli celebrates Mass on the final full day of the Plenary Council’s first assembly.

The Plenary Council journey will continue for nine months, culminating in the second general assembly in July 2022.

During the pre-recorded Mass in an almost empty St Patrick’s Cathedral, Archbishop Comensoli expressed his hope that members would have reached the closing stages of the assembly after several days of “invigorating conversation and productive engagement … leading to (we all hope) the propositions which will form the basis of the final stages of the Plenary Council”.

“But let us not lose sight of our primary task here: that is, to reveal through our deliberations the face of Christ among us, so that He might be reflected in the face of his Body, the Church in Australia, at this time and in our places,” he said.

Archbishop Comensoli said that face of Christ “is particular to our time and place”. It has “very ancient and indigenous lines etched into it; lines of great dignity but also immense pain”.

Brisbane Archbishop Mark Coleridge preaches in St Stephen’s Chapel. Photo: Mark Bowling

In Brisbane’s St Stephen’s Chapel, Archbishop Mark Coleridge, preached after the Gospel in which Jesus calls Simon Peter to move from being a fisherman to a fisher of people.

“Now, Peter has to listen to the one who knows what’s what and what’s possible,” he urged.

“And we’re in exactly the same boat. And we have this week been seeking to listen to the only one who does know what’s what and what’s possible.”

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“And through these days of the first assembly surely what we have done is glimpse… the glory of the face of Christ because we have listened and seen a glimpse and therefore we will as a Church reflect the glory.

Archbishop Coleridge then invited Plenary Council members to step forward in the chapel, close to a large wooden statue of St Mary McKillop. He presented a specially written prayer:

“We turn to you, Mary, as pilgrims on the way of the Plenary Council, joining the whole Church on the Synod path, listening together to the voice of the Spirit. Help us to be wise as you were wise; help us to be strong as you were strong; help us to trust in God’s providence as you did. O woman of the pierced heart, our beloved sister, saint of this land, we look to you as one of us: may your love flow like living water upon the dry earth of our heart, that the Church may bloom in the desert as you did through the power of Jesus the Lord, first-born from the dead, who lives and reigns with the Father and the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen. St Mary of the Cross MacKillop, Pray for us.”

Find Archbishop Coleridge’s Homily from today’s Mass at :

Follow tomorrow’s closing Mass from St Stephen’s Cathedral, Brisbane here.

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